Quantitative characterization of interfacial shear strength (IFSS), in multi-walled carbon nanotube (MWCNT)-reinforced Al matrix composites, has been carried out using an in-situ pull-out technique. The end of an MWCNT protruding out of the tensile fracture surface of the composite was bonded to the tip of an atomic force microscopy (AFM) cantilever using an electron-beam-induced deposition method. The MWCNT was pulled out from the Al matrix using a nanomanipulator system installed inside a scanning electron microscope (SEM). The effective embedded length of the MWCNT incorporated in the Al matrix was evaluated by observing the pulled out MWCNT under high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM). Valid results were obtained for six MWCNTs with straight, visibly damage-free embedded parts nearly perpendicular to the fracture surface. The IFSS between the MWCNT and the Al matrix was 24.8 ± 3.2 MPa. The ultimate tensile strength (UTS) of the MWCNT/Al composites is in good agreement with that estimated by the shear lag model using these IFSS values, resulting in the realization of 60% load transfer efficiency at the directly contacted MWCNT-Al interface in the MWCNT/Al composites. No MWCNT failure was observed during the pullout in this study.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)